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Regional Information - Spain7979Places Of Interest & Things To SeeGerona (Girona)Once known as Gerunda by the Romans, this is ahandsome city on the south side of the Riu Onyar. Theancient capital of Catalonia has much to offer from amagnificent 14th century Gothic cathedral built on tothe hill side, Arab baths and an ancient Jewish quarter.There is a fascinating archaeological walk that runsright around the city, through a maze of cobbledstreets and alleys. Once home to the oil and winetrade with many silversmiths, fishmongers andmerchants, the old town is now full of little shops,trendy cafés and boutiques. 'The Museau d'Art'located in the restored 'Episcopal Palace' displaysRomanesque art and relics from the monastery of'Sant Pere de Rodes'.BarcelonaBarcelona is famous for its art, history and architectureand it is also one of the world's greatest cities forshopping. Port Vell is crammed with shops andeateries and there's bags of atmosphere in the city'snarrow streets and little squares. Its main boulevard,Las Ramblas running from the port to the Placa deCatalunya, is lined with open-air cafés, bookstalls,flower stalls and street artists. The best food market inBarcelona is La Boqueria in La Rambla. This Jewelinthe crown of the Catalan coast is home to manygalleries andmuseums. The highlight is Gaudi'sincredible unfinished cathedral - La Sagrada Familia.Othersights include, the 14th century streets oftheGothic quarter 'TheBarri Gòthic' just behind theharbour. Museums range from, Museu Picassowhichishoused in a Catalan-Gothic palace, the Maritimemuseum or the Zoological museum. Sports fansshould not miss the Olympic Stadium and the NouCamp, home of Barcelona football club.SitgesSitges was developed as a summer resort for thewealthy citizens of Barcelona. Now it is one ofthemost popular resorts on the Costa Dorada, knownfor its attractive promenade, beaches and museums.Here you will find a mixture of the old and the new,explore its old quarter and fine museums, and in theoriginal old town you will find the baroque parishchurch, and some very fine mansions.L'EstartitThe resort started life as little more than a fishingharbour and is now a bustling, modern holiday resortfantastic for families with young children. Nestling atthe foot of the impressive Montgri mountain rangeand presided over by a 13th century castle. Estartit'sposition, between the mountains and the plain of theRiver Ter, gives it the dual advantages of 15 kilometresof beautiful rocky coastline together with one of thelongest sandy beaches on the Coasta Brava. Theresort has a great reputation for its watersports,andwith the rocky inlets along the beach it makesitperfect for snorkelling or boating.La BisbalThis is a medieval market town located by a river.Since the 17th century Bisbal has specialized inproduction of Ceramics and pottery shops line themain road.Its old centre retains many impressivemansions, the architectural remnants of a once thrivingJewish quarter, and parts of a medieval castle built forthe bishops of Girona.FigueresThis is the birth place of Salvador Dali, and as youwould expect it is home to the 'Museau Dali'. This isthe most visited museum in Spain containing some ofhis finest works. You can not miss the museum as it istopped by a huge metallic dome and decorated withluminous giant egg shapes on the roof! There is alsoaliving room designed as Mae West's face, completewith red lips sofa. Figueres is a provincial town withapopulation of some 30,000 and is a great startingpoint to visit the Albéres mountains, which form theborder with France. LlafrancAn attractive Spanish village with a relaxed, leisurelyatmosphere. The village sits on a picturesque sandybeach backed by a tree-lined promenade.Try one of the tempting fish restaurants along theseafront, sipping chilled wine and enjoying freshlyprepared seafood.There's a good choice of shops locallly, although a triptoGirona Market is worthwhile for a colourful andvariedchoice.Platja d'AroA lively, cosmopolitan resort that has developedaround a fantastic sandy beach, one of Costa Brava'sfinest.The clean, golden expanse of sandy beach stretchesthe length of the resort. The pretty marina and themonolith rock, Cavall Bernat, add to the charm.Nearby places of interest include the busy fishing andtrading port of Palamos, and the charming old harbourtown of Sant Feliu.There's an excellent choice of restaurants serving awide variety of Spanish and international cuisine.CadaquésIs a picturesque harbour which has been dubbed the'St.Tropez of Spain'. The beach is wonderful and thetown has quaint narrow streets where you can enjoyadrink in one of the tiny cafés.Fun For All The FamilyUniversal MediterraneaTM- SalouIt's Universal Studio's European theme park. Hereyou'll find a feast of rides that range from fun to fear,there are over 30 rides, 90 shows and 75 places toeat.The park is themed on five worlds, Mexico, Polynesia,Far West, China and the Mediterranean.Aquabrava - Roses This is the largest wave pool in Europe, which has giantspiral waterchutes, free-fall slides, rafting and races. Waterworld - In Lloret de MarHas giant 77m waterchutes, soft slides, waterfalls anda pool with waves up to 2m tall.AquapolisIn La Pineda has slides, rides and wave pool.Medés IslandsYou can take a glass bottom boat from L'EstartittotheIlles Medes. These seven rocky islets areprotected nature reserves hosting the importantcolony of herring gulls. From the boat you can observethe marine life along the way. Scuba divers come fromall over Spain to swim along coral reefs and caves.Los Picos de EuropaTake a cable car 6000 feet to the top of thosetowering mountains for superb views.Beaches to visit:. Tossa de Mar. Lloret de Mar. Calella de Palafrugell has a string of small covesLocal Specialities. Seafood - Grilled sardines to tapas chiperones(babysquid). Crème catalana - a caramel custard. Wines - Cava sparkling white and Rioja plummy red. PaellaCosta Bravathomsonalfresco.co.uk

80Regional Information - Portugal80Places Of Interest & Things To SeeLagosThe most likeable town in the Algarve with a seafaringtradition dating back to the 15th century when Henrythe Navigator set sail for the New world from its port.Historical places of interest are the Church of SantoAnonio, Pau da Bandeira fort and a walk along thecity walls, but Lagos has a relaxed and modern charmof its own for those who want a lively night.Cape San VincentThought of by the medieval Portuguese to be the endof the world before Colombus disproved that theory,this is still the most south-westerly tip of Europe. Thelonely lighthouse polices this busy shipping lane facingnothing but the Azores and the East coast of theUSA! The towering cliffs and stunning beaches aresplendid sights to match the romance of this place.Praia da LuzOnce a busy fishing village when tuna was caught byhuge nets draped from beneath the Fort. The remainsof the Roman bath house by the sea indicate it hasalways been a favourite fishing destination. As thefishmigrated south so tourists have migrated intoappreciate this pleasant little town with goodrestaurants and lively bars.Algarve's golden triangleQuinta do Lago, Vale do Lobo and Vilamoura marinaare the addresses for the millionaires and theirfabulous villas. Take a walk around the harbour toname check the yachts by day, or visit the chicrestaurants and nightclubs in the evening.Caldas de MonchiqueIf you are searching for a haven of tranquillity, visit thelovely inland area of Monchique where a quiet ruralway of life is still enjoyed amongst the terraced fieldsand forests. At 900m the summit of Foia is thehighest point of the Algarve with stunning viewsofthe coast.West coast and AljezurTake the time to visit the great beaches and unspoiltscenery of the western coast. There are somefantastic stretches of sand and more authenticeateries to be discovered as you make your way tothe magical town of Ajezur within the Costa Vicentinanature reserve.Fun For All The FamilyDolphin safarisYou can take a boat trip from Lagos harbour to seethe dolphins in their wild habitat but also visit theDolphinarium at Alcanarilha for a stunning show ofthese intelligent and entertaining mammals.Aqualand water park near AlcantarilhaSample some of the fastest and most exhilaratingrides in this superb water park.Mark McCarrick soccer school at Boavista resort(3km)Learn new skills and techniques from professionalcoaches so you can start the new season in top form.Want to feel the wind in the sails like the ancientmariners? Take a boat ride along the coast toSagresin sail boats to recreate the famousPortuguese sailing style.Local Specialities. Soups - home made fish soups are specialities.. Shellfish for starters always recommended.. Dourada (sea bream) and sardines for main course,Cataplana and Caldeira the most famous seafoodstews.. Meat courses - Piri piri is the famous chilli sauceand Frango piri piri is a delicious charcoal chickendish.. Sweets - The Portuguese are great confectioners:Pudim Flan is a local crème caramel not to bemissed.. Portuguese wines - massive variety and greatquality on offer: Vinho Verde from the north is alight and refreshing white wine; Local reds fromtheprovince of Alentejo are consistent: Redondo,Borba and Reguegos are names to look out for.Otherwise the Duoro valley wines have internationalreputations and offer exceptional value.Algarvethomsonalfresco.co.uk